Do you BuJo?! If you aren’t on the bujo bandwagon yet (and you should be!), bujo is a fantastic tool to help you plan, increase productivity and if you didn’t know already, also short for bullet journal!
It’s great for those who want to measure certain aspect of their life such as spending, fitness, daily habits and even something you may not even consider day-today, your mood! Regular habits are daily patterns that you want to improve with each passing day such as sleep, flossing (a personal favourite that I generally fail on), cooking at home and reading.
To start, grab your favourite journal that can withstand the inkiness of your markers, fineliners and pens.
The journal that I have used below is the ever popular, Leuchtturm1917, rivals of my favourite journal maker, Moleskine but great for bullet journaling. In fact, the reason why it is called bullet journaling is because the process for creating the trackers, tables, doodling sections and diary entries are easily created using the dots on the journal pages – hence, bullet journal!
The first page of the bullet journal will be the monthly cover page:
Before you begin, you will need to establish a colour scheme and a creative theme (if you wish). With fall, it was easy enough to follow a theme of the leaves changing colour and a colour scheme of warm colours (red, orange, yellows, brown).
Now, depending on where you left off last and if you have a preference for where your month begins, you may have an extra page to design in addition to your cover page.
Personally, I prefer to have my monthly cover page design start on the right hand side of the notebook (maybe because I’m right-handed, I don’t know why I am so particular!) Since I finished my last page of August on the right, I had an extra left page to fill and do something with. As illustrated above, I decided to go with a quote about autumn (which I am just noticing now that I have spelled incorrectly 😤).
Using my tombow brush pens, I wrote the quote out in brush calligraphy and used the black one to add shading and dimension.
For the cover page, ensure that the month is prominent and depending on your theme, add embellishments and use your colour scheme to colour them in. I went with a simple hand drawn circle (over and over again) and added different branch leaf designs hanging off it and ultimately (and unintentionally) created a autumn wreath and coloured the elements in using Tombow dual brush pens.
The next step is to create a monthly spread – essentially it is a calendar view of the month spread across one or two pages (whatever your heart desires) and shows major events (as you would write on a regular monthly calendar.
For mine below, I have written in any birthdays, run days and other fun plans for September.
You can be creative with how you design your monthly spread; I have used an acorn to represent each day of the month. I also forgot and didn’t measure out the size of the acorns to fill them across the two pages evenly and as a result, I had a lot of space left on the right hand side. Fear not! I slotted in another quote (and a drop shadow!) to complete the spread and this one was written by Maya Angelou. The quote is about change since the fall season and September month remind me of change.
Add other embellishments of your theme in the empty spaces and fill in the elements with colours from your scheme to make the pages pop!
Going forward, feel free to customize these pages in your bullet journal to fit your lifestyle and daily habits. As mentioned above, other elements of your journal could include (but are not limited to):
- Weekly Spreads (for those busy days that need more space than what it is in your monthly spread)
- Habit Tracker
- Journaling (to capture your daily thoughts and activities)
- Scrapbooking (for pasting mementos of your concerts, trips and other fun plans)
- Drawing pages (just a space to let out your creative doodling juices)
- Wish List (a place where you write things you want to buy)
You can literally do anything you want in your bullet journal; that’s what makes it so great, it is completely customizable to the way you live! You do you!
Below is another example that I did for September – a mood and money tracker:
For a mood tracker, I drew different leaf designs using my Tombow MONO professional drawing pen. I drew 30 of them to represent each day of September and below it, is a legend to indicate how I felt about that day. Using the legend, every day I will colour one leaf to represent how I felt. At the end of the month, you can see how happy, sad or angry you’ve been in September and depending on the result, you can try to be more uplifting in October or continue to be as you are 🙂
For the expense tracker, I created a simple table with sections for the date, store and amount spent. This is a really great way to see how you’re doing against your budget and to see how much you’ve spent in a month. Sadly, you will quickly realize how all of those trips to Michaels are really adding up!
Tip: next time, I will include a colour coding section to see what kind of spending is happening in Groceries, Gas, Food (that is not homecooking), Crafts (yes, it needs its own section), events (for those concerts,
So, are you ready to start your bullet journal for next month? You can take what you’ve learned and read here to begin your own bujo journey going forward. Warning: it can be highly addictive and you may find yourself following lots of Instagram channels stat.
If you have any questions or recommendations for October, leave me a comment below.